Category Archives: James Lofton

26

July

Cory’s Corner: Ted Thompson will show Jordy Nelson the money

Jordy Nelson picked a pretty good time to break out. He caught nine passes for 140 yards and a touchdown in a Super Bowl XLV win.

Jordy Nelson picked a pretty good time to break out. He caught nine passes for 140 yards and a touchdown in a Super Bowl XLV win.

Jordy Nelson wants $10 million per season.

The question isn’t if Nelson is worth that much dough. The question is if Nelson is worth more than Greg Jennings or James Lofton.

We all know how squeamish general manager Ted Thompson gets about signing guys that are within a whisper of age 30. Jennings was 29 and coming off a sports hernia injury in 2012 that only allowed him to start five games.

Even though Jennings was the Packers’ No. 1 option from 2008-2011, Thompson made the right call in letting him go.

James Lofton is a little bit more interesting. He led the Packers in receiving from 1978-1986 and went to seven Pro Bowls while in Green Bay. When he left the Packers, Lofton was the team’s all-time leading receiver, a record that’s now owned by Donald Driver.

But the Packers surprisingly moved on. Lofton’s last season in Green Bay was at age 30 and it turned out to be a good decision, as Lofton never caught more than 60 balls again and only notched one more 1,000-yard season.

Which brings us to Nelson, who might be one of the most undervalued receivers in the league. Last year he proved his worth by producing when all-everything quarterback Aaron Rodgers was out for seven games and he had to adjust to four different starting quarterbacks. Nelson’s running mate, Randall Cobb, was injured as well. So with all that, Nelson still caught a career-high 85 balls for a career-high 1,314 yards and eight touchdowns.

Nelson just turned 29 in May and despite not getting any Pro Bowl love, he’s worth every penny of the $10 million that he is asking. Barring an unforeseen injury, I don’t see Nelson’s production falling off. That’s because he wasn’t consistently starting at wideout until his third year in the league.

Conversely, Jennings and Lofton started the majority of games right away.

Thompson may be pacing back-and-forth with this decision, but the right call is to give Nelson the money. Cobb is a dynamic athlete, but with his stop-on-a-dime mentality, he is more susceptible to a knee or ankle injury.

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11

May

Cory’s Corner: Jared Abbrederis steals Day 3 for Packers

Jared Abbrederis was a first team All-Big Ten pick, despite playing in a run-first offense.

Jared Abbrederis was a first team All-Big Ten pick, despite playing in a run-first offense.

This draft was hailed as one of the best wide receiving crops ever.

And the Packers proved why on Saturday by getting Jared Abbrederis with the 176th overall pick.

Abbrederis was a first team All-Big Ten selection the last two years — and the most amazing thing is that he did it despite catching passes from an inefficient and inaccurate quarterback. He also didn’t have a legit No. 2 complementary receiver the last two years, but he continued to get better even though defenses were clearly zeroing in on stopping him, and him only, in the passing game.

So how does a wiry kid with Wisconsin roots end up getting better each year in college? The easy answer is that he runs routes very well, which he does run with surgeon-like precision. But the reason he is amazing in the passing game is because he understands the process having won a state title as an option quarterback in high school. He also was a quarterback on the scout team at Wisconsin.

He may be a receiver but he scans the field like a quarterback. He looks to see what the defense is going to allow and then he just attacks it with his crisp route running.

Abbrederis went to Wisconsin with the intention of running track. After asking a football coach if he could walk-on, he was able to get his foot in the door and he hasn’t looked back since.

It’s an excellent pick and not just because he grew up about 85 miles from the Lambeau Field steps. It’s because he has a high football IQ and isn’t afraid to prove people wrong.

Jared Abbrederis: A+

 

Carl Bradford is never light on intensity.

Carl Bradford is never light on intensity.

The Packers already have one heat-seeking ball hawk at outside linebacker.

They just got another one with the 121st overall pick in Carl Bradford. Now, I’m not even saying that Bradford is in Clay Matthews’ stratosphere for talent but he is in the same zip code for intensity. And that’s saying something, because we all know how hard Mathews plays.